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The Joseph K. Lumsden Bahweting Anishnabe School (K-8) is both a Bureau of Indian Affairs school and a Michigan Charter school. As such, a myriad of overlapping regulations exist to govern the school. A single school board of directors serves as the supervising authority. Northern Michigan University serves as the charter authorizing entity.

Located within a public school district that has a significant Native American drop-out rate, the chartering approach to public education was welcomed in the tribal community. Since Bahweting became a charter school, the quality of education has increased significantly. The school has been awarded the Governor of Michigan’s Gold Apple Award for outstanding student performance in the ‘Most Improved’ category on the Michigan Education Assessment Program (MEAP) tests. The school has also been honored by the U.S. Department of Education with the Title I Distinguished School Award. Of the 48,000 Title I schools nation-wide, Bahweting was among 95 schools so honored.

As a charter school, Bahweting has the flexibility to offer a curriculum that exceeds the Michigan Core State standards, including exposure to the Anishnabe language, culture and values education. As a BIA tribal school, additional requirements to match curriculum with federal standards for education enhances the educational mission even further.

As a public school academy, Bahweting is open to the community at-large. Students already enrolled have preference in admissions for the next school year. There is an open enrollment period in the Spring for the upcoming school year, contact the school for the exact dates. If the number of new students exceeds the number of available classroom openings, the school utilizes a process to determine how the available spots are filled. Contact the school for specific information regarding this process.

NOTE: The school is not operated as a Sault Tribe program.

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Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY